Can’t stop Pride.
An estimated 120,000 people braved the rains to celebrate Pride in Taipei, with Taiwan’s LGBTQIA community seeing the annual event as a celebration and a continuing challenge to push for more rights.
On one hand, the event marks landmark pro-LGBTQIA developments, particularly the legalization of marriage equality in 2019, and granting of right to change gender markers in official documents of transgender people in 2021. But on the other hand, LGBTQIA struggle isn’t over yet, with transnational marriages not allowed for LGBTQIA people, and transgender people only allowed to change their gender markers if they undergo psychological testing and sex reassignment surgery.
In a statement to Outrage Magazine, Brian 布萊恩, who is with the Taiwan Rainbow Civil Action Association, said that “while some same sex marriage is legal, there are still limits on who can get married. For foreigners trying to marry their Taiwanese partner, if the foreigner’s country does not recognize same sex marriage, they can’t get married in Taiwan.”
Also, “the march for the right to change gender markings on official documents is still currently in its infancy. There is quite a stringent process to follow, and it requires undergoing surgery to be able to finish the process. There has only been one case of a transgender person getting their markers changed without having surgery first.”
For the local LGBTQIA community, other issues being advocated include reproductive rights (i.e. use of surrogacy), and adoption rights (since gay couples are unable to adopt).
The theme this year, An Unlimited Future, “also aims to break down walls built around gender and sexuality. Though same sex marriage has passed, many groups are still marginalized or even stigmatized by others. We hope for a day where all members of the LGBTQIA rainbow can comfortably be their most authentic selves without the worry of any kind of retribution, danger, or judgement.”
Considered as the biggest Pride parade in east Asia, this is the first LGBTQIA-related event in the country after it reopened post-COVID19.
In a Facebook message, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen stressed the pro-LGBTQIA progress that happened in the country, exemplified by the granting of marriage rights that many people may not have been able ti imagine 20 years ago. “Now, being able to choose marriage is something that most people find commonplace,” she stated.